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Published On: Mon, Dec 10th, 2012

Minnesota, Wisconsin and midwest slammed by biggest snowstorm in 2 years

The heaviest snowstorm to hit the region in two winters dumped heavy snow across a broad belt of Minnesota, including the Twin Cities area, as well as parts of western Wisconsin.

photo StarWarsMG

Forecasters say up to 15 inches of snow are possible in the Twin Cities by Monday night.

“Temperatures dropped dramatically,” Lt. Eric Roeske of the Minnesota Highway Patrol told the The Global Dispatch during a phone interview on Monday morning.

“Heavy, wet snow froze, so most roads are now snow- and ice-covered this morning.”

The slow-moving storm was causing difficult driving and scores of mostly minor traffic accidents across much of Minnesota, highway closures in eastern South Dakota and southwestern Minnesota, and flight cancellations and delays at Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport.

A blizzard warning was posted for much of eastern South Dakota and southwestern Minnesota, while a winter storm warning was up for much of central and eastern Minnesota and western Wisconsin.

“It wasn’t even about getting through the snow,” said T.J. Melcher, public affairs coordinator with the Minnesota Department of Transportation in Willmar. When winds picked up, “in the western part of state, we had to pull plows off the road … because there was zero visibility.”

The Minnesota Department of Transportation reported difficult driving conditions across much of the southern two-thirds of the state, with no travel advised and several highways closed in west-central and southwestern Minnesota.

Metrodome officials were trying to make sure the heavy snow in downtown Minneapolis didn’t bring the roof down.

It’s been almost two years to the day since 17 inches of snow in 24 hours tore holes in the inflatable dome, forcing the Vikings to play the final two games of the season elsewhere.

That repair project cost $22.7 million.

Steve Maki, director of facilities for the Metropolitan Sports Facilities Authority, confirms they cranked up the heat after Sunday’s Vikings-Bears game.

 

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About the Author

- Roxanne "Butter" Bracco began with the Dispatch as Pittsburgh Correspondent, but will be providing reports and insights from Washington DC, Maryland and the surrounding region. Contact Roxie aka "Butter" at [email protected] ATTN: Roxie or Butter Bracco

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